posted on Thursday, 20 April, 2006 - 08:20 pm
I have an audio of a Sky concert recorded from Radio 2, allegedly from the Dominion in 1980. However, according to the main site, they never played The Dominion in 1980. So I assume that it's not from 1980! (The recording I have is from a repeat sometime in the 1990's I assume; it's top and tailed by Ed "Stewpot" Stewart)
I assume that it's a recording from one of the shows at the Dominion on the Sky At Night Tour. The set list, as broadcast, is remarkably similar to the first half of the First UK Tour (Westway - Danza - Cannonball - March/Dance Of The Little Fairies - El Cielo / Sahara - Hotta - Carillon - Tocatta - Vivaldi ). All it misses is Cavatina. Was the same set (broadly) used for both tours? If it is from the Dominion, does anybody know which of the five nights it was? I have to say, that it's a fantastic show, albeit only about 50 or so minutes.
Unfortunately for me, the only live recording that I have. Are there any more knocking around anywhere? As I said, it's a superb show and I'd like to experience some more. Can anyone help me?
Chris posted on Thursday, 20 April, 2006 - 10:23 pm
I have this recording as well, Herbert. Plus I have a feeling that I also have Cavatina and Where Opposites Meet (possibly from the same gig), which I got from a different source.
The concert was definitely from 1979. I have a feeling that it is from the last night of the tour as, on one of my recordings at least, John Williams makes some comments to that effect. He says something like, "We've all enjoyed ourselves on this tour, but it's a bit sad too as it will be a month or so before we work together again." Which I presume meant the beginning of the studio sessions for sky2. Apologies to John if I have quoted him incorrectly from memory!
I have an audio recording of the infamous Hammersmith Odeon concert from 1980 (recorded at the time off the TV using a cassette recorder!) and, of course, the band's first televised performance from Musikladen in Germany is now widely available on DVD. And quite amazing it is too! Officially, the only other live sky release was the 1981 Westminster Abbey gig, which was released on video and laser disc. Unofficially, there are a few other bits and bobs doing the rounds (mostly from the Steve Gray era).
posted on Saturday, 22 April, 2006 - 12:11 am
I downloaded the gig Herbert mentioned above. The quality is pretty good, and appears to be in stereo as well.
Chris, How about Bedrock in 1991, that was an official release on DVD. Maybe not everone's era, and towards the end of SKY, but still a great gig with Paul Hart on violin.
Chris posted on Saturday, 22 April, 2006 - 10:20 am
Not really my cup of tea, the Bedrock concert. Maybe it was just too late in the day, so to speak.
I borrowed my copy of the Dominion Theatre gig from a friend and will admit that, when copying it to CD, I tried to be a little too clever by adding reverb, etc, and I think I may have added a little too much! Maybe a pure version might sound a little better!!! A sound engineer I am not! As I said, I obtained some additional tracks, I think from Mike Breen.
I've just decided to give it a listen... Yes, it's awash with reverb - sounds like they are playing in a cavern. But not THE Cavern!!! John Williams introduces Cannonball and says that it's the last night of the tour. No Cavatina or Where Opposites Meet, but I know I've got them somewhere, maybe on a cassette. Strange. Oh well...
Chris, If you want a fresh copy just let me know and I'll be happy to pass one on. All I've done to it is a tiny amount of noise removal in order to reduce the high end hiss.
Chris posted on Tuesday, 25 April, 2006 - 05:11 pm
Thanks for the offer, Myke. I'm sure that your version sounds a lot better than mine!!! Mine's OK, just a bit too echoey, I suppose. I wish I knew where those other live recordings are of Cavatina and Where Opposites Meet. I'm sure I've got them somewhere, but I don't know where. Where Opposites is particularly interesting as some of the synth sounds are different and the ending is quite awesome - much 'bigger' than the studio version or the one on the Bremen DVD.
Anyway, I shall be in touch.
posted on Wednesday, 26 April, 2006 - 08:53 pm
Thanks for the info chaps; tantalising enough for a couple more questions if I may?
Chris: The bits and bobs doing the rounds; can you point me in their general direction?
Why is Hammersmith 1980 infamous? Is that show doing the rounds too?
Myke: I do enjoy enjoy the Bedrock show. Just happened to notice that it was on ITV one night at about 3ish many years ago; I never usually check the TV listings. Audio-wise, I've just got a rip of my video; it was deleted before I got my hands on it.
Chris posted on Wednesday, 26 April, 2006 - 10:58 pm
I guess when I say 'infamous' in relation to the Hammersmith gig, what I mean is most people seem to know it by reputation and we would all dearly love to see it again (and some for the first time). The problem is, it has remained unseen, as far as we know, for the last 25 or 26 years and it is proving impossible to get hold of! Having seen it myself back in 1980, I'd say that it represents sky at their very peak and I would do virtually anything to get my hands on a copy of the programme, in virtually any quality. I have an audio recording, but this just makes me want to see it even more!
With regards the other bits 'n bobs. I hope that Myke won't mind me pointing you in his direction, as he informs me that he is happy to make copies of said bits 'n bobs and asked me to spread the word!
Herbert, The bits n bobs Chris refers to is a direct result of his foresight so many years ago in keeping various clips safe on betamax recordings. Pretty damn good quality too for such old tapes, shows you what betamax was made of in its day! Most are from the Val Doonican show, but one other clip seems to be a promotional video from something called 'Videostars' (a mostly cringe-making remembrance of early 80's music videos). With Chris's and Richard's help (thanks Tricky!) I put together six of these clips, and called it SKY 'bits'. If you want a copy then I'm only too happy to help out. Drop me a line for details.
Tricky posted on Friday, 28 April, 2006 - 12:45 pm
There's also some clips of the performances on Top of the Pops and Musikladen which (after a bit of cleaning up) I'll eventually make available. Under normal circumstances I'd have done this by now, but my (12 years old!) car started leaking water into the oil :-(. Chris, remember what I said about being undecided as to whether to wash the car or buy a new one? Yes - it's a new one (well, 2+1/2 years old). At least I can play my Sky CDs in this - at max volume of course ! ;-)
This has unfortunately delayed my contributions to the (wait for it!) Sky at Hammersmith Action Group :-)
Chris posted on Friday, 28 April, 2006 - 04:11 pm
Incidentally; the 'cringe-making' video of Toccata (Myke's words, not mine!) actually came to me via tricky, so he's the one to blame for this! Actually, I thought it was quite good. Sorry! I have a feeling that this promo video originated in Germany or Holland.
I'm glad that the Betamax recordings held up so well after all these years. Betamax was a brilliant format and superior in many ways to VHS. (Not least of all because the standard tapes had an extra fifteen minutes at the end over VHS. Just right for recording bits n' bobs to fill up the tape!!!!
The Top of the Pops and Musikladen clips are great - especially the early and obviously completely live version of Toccata.
Chris, No no no, The SKY clip of Toccata on that video was excellent, best version I have actually, especially with Francis Monkman playing. Thanks so much to Tricky for sending it to me, as I'd never seen Francis playing before.
For cringe-making I was actually referring to the rest of the pop videos on that DVD which Richard sent to me. The videos were very clean, an excellent transfer to disk, but I suppose production values/fashions were really different back then compared to modern pop videos. It mainly made me remember some of the music I used to listen to, how bad it was (The Buggles for instance!), and some of the fashion I used to wear (my wife would disown me if I wore that stuff again). Then I remember the only decent music I was a fan of at the time, and saw live too as a teenager. SKY are the only band I was, at the time and still am, a fan of after 25+ years.
Bill D posted on Friday, 28 April, 2006 - 09:42 pm
But not as good as V2000. 5 hr double-sided cassettes (not with the flimsy, chewable tape on 5 hr VHS) at half-speed gave 20 hr continuous recording with a superior picture, fast-forward picture, slo-mo and freeze frame over VHS and Betamax.
The automatic tracking system was invented by Philips as an integral part of the V2000 system and copied on their VHS machines. Other brands followed suit.
Chris posted on Saturday, 29 April, 2006 - 10:00 am
Sorry, Myke. My mistake! Should have realised that you weren't refering to that marvellous piece of avant gard video making that was Toccata!
One of my friends has recently taken to collecting old video machines from the 60s and 70s. He's got seven or eight (of various different makes and models) and I'm sure that the Philips V2000 is one of them! He also has several boxes of old home recorded video cassettes (some from the 1970s) and there are some gems on some of them! No luck in finding the 1980 Hammersmith Odeon gig on any of them as yet - but, believe me, we are looking!!!
Myke. posted on Saturday, 29 April, 2006 - 01:44 pm
Chris, I'll keep my fingers crossed then! If you want any transferred, just let me know, with the exception of V2000 (that's one machine I don't have).
Chris posted on Saturday, 29 April, 2006 - 05:15 pm
Isn't it strange to think that, quite probably, someone out there did actually record the 1980 Hammersmith gig (possibly even on a V2000 machine), but has no idea that it remains so elusive! They might not have access to the internet, or if they do, they might never have bothered to visit this forum. They might even have forgotten that they recorded it and the tape might be lying amongst dozens of others, unwatched for years! I honestly believe that this is more than a slight possibility!
Which is why, when boxes of old video tapes from 25+ years ago do turn up, I always ask my friend Paul to keep an eye out for it!